I ran into Jim Callis and John Manuel, the editors of Baseball America, a few minutes ago.
The duo knows minor league baseball and its players as well as anybody, so I asked them about T.J. McFarland, the 23-year-old left-handed pitcher that the
McFarland, a sinkerball/slider pitcher who throws his fastball in the high 80s, went 16-8 with a 4.03 ERA in 27 combined starts at Double-A and Triple-A in the Indians' system in 2012. The Orioles acquired him for $50,000 in the draft and will have to offer him back at half the price if McFarland does not stay on the Orioles' 25-man roster all season.
Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette said McFarland will get a chance to compete for a roster -- and rotation spot -- in the spring.
Here's what Callis and Manuel had to say about McFarland.
Callis: "I think he has a chance to make the team. It's not like you are really having to stretch to believe to say this guy could be a (No.) 5 or maybe a 4 starter. ... I don't think he is a high-ceiling guy, but he could be a back of the rotation guy. It cost, what, $50,000 if you're wrong. ... He's not one of those guys who is in low class A who throws 95 mph with no command."